Investing in Amanah Saham Bumiputera (ASB) and Amanah Saham Malaysia (ASM) are popular options among Malaysians. Learn why you should invest in ASB and ASM.

When we talk about investments in Malaysia, Amanah Saham Bumiputera (ASB) and Amanah Saham Malaysia (ASM) are popular choices. Both are managed by Amanah Saham Nasional Berhad (ASNB), a wholly subsidiary under Permodalan Nasional Berhad (PNB).

One important difference between ASB and ASM:

  • ASB is for Malaysian Bumiputera investors only.
    • Since introduced in 1990, ASB has helped Malaysian Bumiputeras to invest in relatively low risk and long-term investment instrument.
  • ASM is open to all Malaysians, regardless whether Bumiputera or not.
    • ASM was launched on 20 April 2000 to offer long-term investment opportunities for Malaysians to generate competitive and prolonged returns through diverse portfolios.

There are also differences in historical returns and investment holdings between the different funds. You can choose to invest in one or more ASNB funds.

 

Pros and Cons of Investing in ASB and ASM

FundType of FundCategoryEligibiltyFinancial Year EndPrice/unitMinimun initial investmentMaximum investment (units)EPF Investment SchemeRedemptionSales Charge
ASBIncomeMixed assetBumiputera2020-12-31110200000NoneOn-the-spotNone
ASB 2IncomeMixed assetBumiputera2020-03-31110200000YesOn-the-spotNone
ASB 3 DidikGrowthMixed assetBumiputera2020-06-30110Unlimited, subjected to availability unitsYesOn-the-spotNone
ASMIncomeMixed assetMalaysian2020-03-31110Unlimited, subjected to availability unitsNoneOn-the-spotNone
ASM 2 WawasanIncomeMixed assetMalaysian2020-08-31110Unlimited, subjected to availability unitsYesOn-the-spotNone
ASM 3IncomeMixed assetMalaysian2020-09-30110Unlimited, subjected to availability unitsYesOn-the-spotNone

Source: ASNB official website

A significant advantage of investing in fixed price assets is that your investment’s net asset value (NAV) will remain fixed and you will get a healthy amount of exposure to equity markets.

For example, last year, PNB announced the dividend to be 5.5%, which is their lowest recorded return in 50 years. However, at that time the inflation rate in Malaysia was 1.1% as of October 2019. Therefore comparatively, a 5.5% return on your ASB investments is still a good thing.

As with any unit trust, the funds performance is greatly dependent on the performance of the companies that the fund invests in. If the companies reported a lower earning, it will affect the fund performance and thus a lower dividend.

Last March, ASNB announced an income distribution per unit of 4.75 sen to 439,543 unit holders for ASB 2, for the financial year ending March 31, 2020.

ASB also announced an income distribution of 4.25 sen per unit to 553,188 unit holders for Amanah Saham Malaysia (ASM).

Economic analyst, Dr Aimi Zulhazmi Abdul Rashid, told The Malaysian Reserve that PNB’s dividend for its funds would likely to be lower as the country’s equity market is affected by the pandemic.

“Dividends from shares or funds are mainly affected by GDP that grew only 3.6% due to falling crude palm oil prices, moderate oil prices and the ongoing trade war between the US and China,” – Dr Aimi Zulhazmi Abdul Rashid.

How to Invest in ASNB

Eligibility

As mentioned before, there is a key difference between ASB and ASN:

  • ASB is for Malaysian Bumiputera investors only.
  • ASM is open to all Malaysians, regardless whether Bumiputera or not.

Beginning from RM10, Malaysian citizens are eligible to apply to invest in ASNB.

Before You Invest

According to the ASNB official website, before you go and invest in respective funds, do read their latest prospectus which can be acquired: